The Village of Spring Lake is going to be the home of Michigan’s smallest park and they are seeking name suggestions. Visit Spring Lake Michigan took to Facebook and said the Village is working on plans to be home to Michigan’s smallest park.
“Exciting News! Plans are in the works for the Village to be home to Michigan’s Smallest Park. One problem – we need a name!” said Visit Spring Lake Michigan on Facebook.
The village’s Downtown Development Authority (DDA) announced plans on Friday to bring the small park to the space located on the east side of South Jackson St.
During the pandemic, the Village was awarded a grant to purchase a concrete cornhole set for its social district.
“We placed the cornhole game in this location along South Jackson Street for folks to enjoy. I kept looking at this area and thinking about how else we can enhance that space to encourage more people to use it,” Stefanie Herder, director of the village’s Downtown Development Authority, said in a news release.
Michigan’s “smallest park” could become a destination for visitors in the West Michigan Area.
“We have over 20,000 cars that drive through the Village every day. The biggest question for decades has been ‘How do we get them to stop in the Village?’. The new developments in the Village over the past 5 years have been a big help. I’d love to see visitors stop to visit the new park, take a selfie, grab a bite to eat, enjoy a social district drink, or shop,” said Herder.
The Village said that Herder started researching small parks nationwide and found the smallest park in Portland, Oregon. It actually holds the record for being the smallest park in the world with a total area of 452 square inches. While searching, she could not find anything about there being the smallest park in Michigan.
“There wasn’t much out there about an official, smallest park in Michigan. I took this information and tied it in with our goals for more gathering spaces in our Social District. Why not create a new common space AND make it Michigan’s Smallest Park?” said Herder.
The new park will have seating, plants and planters, and shade. The DDA said there are two parallel parking spaces located along the space, which could be used for a food truck to set up.
What should the park name be?
The Village is looking for suggestions and ideas from residents and visitors. “We are encouraging folks to share their name ideas on our social media posts about the proposed park,” said Herder.
People have chimed in with their name suggestions under the Facebook post. “How about “Puddle Park” … a small park in Spring LAKE …,” said a commenter. “Fountainless Park or No Where to Park Park,” another commenter said.
Some commenters took a more serious approach with their name suggestions. “What if we honored the indigenous land we’re on and choose a name in the Odawa language? “Kiins ni” means bit of land.”
Another person suggested that the name should celebrate families of African American descent. “Benjamin Campbell was well known as a cobbler shoemaker and well respected families in the community.”
To submit an idea, add a comment on this Facebook post.